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Actually it is Quiche Janelle Day. I’ll explain more later.
No, wait. I think it was National Kitchen Catastrophe Day. That’s not it. National Dishzilla Day? I could also call it National Almost Burn Your Feet in the Kitchen Day. Okay, okay. I’ve finally got it. Today is National “It’s One of THOSE Days” Day. That is an apt descriptor.
I really wanted to make Quiche Lorraine and stick to the script but every time I perused the internet or my cookbooks for a traditional recipe I just found others that seemed more appealing. Quiche Lorraine (if you are an egg freak like me) is still wonderful with it’s creamy, eggy, Gruyere-cheesy and bacony goodness however I just seemed to gravitate to this combination: leeks, bacon, goat cheese and chives. I know, I know, too many flavours can ruin a good dish but still I wanted them all. I ditched the KISS rule and went for the big quiche guns. I went for the .50 cal quiche. I must be tired because I think these quiche jokes are funny.
I think my cursed afternoon in the kitchen can be attributed to my general ease with which I offered to bring one quiche to my aunt’s house for supper tonight and the offer to bring another quiche to a fellow student’s house for our last French class tomorrow evening. What was I thinking? Here is what happened during my cursed afternoon:
1. I was so rushed I forgot to take pictures and therefore only have disastrous scenes to show you with one quiche picture at the end.
2. I was a complete klutz and now value the safety requirement of covered footwear in the kitchen.
3. My pastry kept on shrinking . . . . and puffing . . .. . and more shrinking.
4. Due to the fact I needed two quiches I was always doubling ingredients in my head and if you know me well (yes, a science and math teacher) you know fractions are not my forte.
5. I decided to tackle an unknown pie pastry recipe that produces four pies – you know, so I would have some for the freezer this summer – but this was not the time for pastry experimentation.
The General Step-by-Step Guidelines to Make Quiche Janelle: (for ONE quiche)
1. Make the pie shell. I made the dough or Pate Brisee the day before so I knew it would be nice and cold when it was time to roll it out. I followed the recipe from “Baking with Julia” and the tips were very helpful as I had not made a pie crust in a few years. Use whatever recipe you like – or buy a frozen pie shell! [Eds - or bake Ian's Tough Guy Pastry!] I knew I was already doomed when the full recipe did not fit in my food processor so I had to dump everything in a bowl and start cutting in the lard and butter by hand. It got a little overworked, thus the shrinking crust in the last photo.
2. Cook the quiche “flavours”. I cooked the whites of two leeks in 1/2 cup of water, 2 tablespoons of butter and a pinch of salt in a saucepan until the water evaporated. Continue cooking for 15-20 minutes on low until leeks are soft. I sliced 5 large cremini mushrooms and sauteed them in 1 tablespoon of butter until nice and brown. Chop about a tablespoon of chives. Coarsely chop about 3 strips of cooked bacon.
3. Prebake or “par-bake” the shell by rolling out the dough quickly, trimming the excess dough and putting parchment paper or tin foil in the crust and filling it with pie weights or dried beans. Bake for about 8-10 minutes at 400F. Then remove the parchment and beans, spilling the scalding little buggers all over the floor and on your feet. Return shell to pan to cook for just 2-3 minutes more. Take it out when the crust just starts to shrink from the edge of the pie plate and puffs too much.
4. In a mixing bowl beat 4 eggs. Add 1 cup of cream and 1 cup of whole milk. Beat together and add some freshly cracked pepper.
5. Sprinkle the chives, mushrooms, leeks and bacon on the bottom of the pie shell. Pour the egg mixture carefully into the pie shell and dot with crumbled goat cheese (I used maybe 3 tablespoons).
6. Bake on the top third of an oven at 375F for about 30 minutes ensuring the top of the quiche is puffed and golden brown. Watch pie crust shrivel and disappear from the edge of the pie plate.
I wasn’t trying to be messy and I thought I was organized, but even the best laid plans . . .
These pie weights were actually more like hot Mexican jumping beans when removed from the oven.
On the way to their final resting place.
Two very terrified eggs, wondering if they are next in the middle of this kitchen disaster!
I think it looks pretty, even if the edge of the crust tried to hide under the filling.
All in all, it was just one of those kitchen days. The quiche was delicious and not a single slice was left at supper. The combination of flavours were just fine.
via Saskatchewan (and a very messy kitchen),
I’m going to skip the historical jaunt through the history of the sandwich* and launch right into my Personal Sandwich Olympics!
Open Faced, tomato, cheese, huge slab of toasted bread.
Consumed happily on a stop at the Anjou Bakery in the middle of an orchard in Washington State.
I think Schmoo’s face says it all.
Silver Medal: Ireland
Brie and Mashed Potatoes on brown.
Colorful, no. Tasty to two girls walking the Cliff’s of Mohr, and subsequently having a picnic cliff-side with our backs to the warm rocks and our faces to the ocean breezes? Heck ya.
Besides, we were in Ireland, you put potatoes in everything.
[For the record, this photo is of Inishmore, one of the Aran Islands in Galway Bay]
Gold Medal: CANADA (WOOT!)
In September 2003 Schmoo and I set out to make the perfect sandwich, something which would be worthy of nice bottle of red that RC had given to me for my birthday six months previous, and jealously hoarded since.
We bought a round of sourdough at the Italian Bakery, picked fresh cherry tomatoes from my yard, crisped the bacon, slathered on the mayo, and topped with brie. Sadly no photos exist, but I do have an email to RC from the next morning where I report that I was “lovely, warm, comfy and appeased” by the wine and sandwich night. A gold medal sandwich indeed.
Tonight’s sandwich is a homage to the gold medal winner: roasted-garlic bread (toasted), goat brie, thick sliced bacon, tomato, polski ogorki pickles and salt and pepper.
It was really really good.
So I made and ate another.
*Other than to clear this up: an 18th century aristocrat did NOT invent the sandwich. Come on people, it’s meat and cheese between bread… did you really think that nobody thought of that before?